Marks & Spencer Somerset Traditional Cider (Sheppy’s)

By coincident, during my visit to Wroclaw, I have learned that Marks & Spencer stocks a few bottles of cider. Surprisingly, such cider brands as Sheppy’s, Westons or Guillet Freres produce cider for Marks & Spencer. Time to find out how they may taste like!Company: Sheppy’s
Place of Origin: 
Taunton, Somerset, UK
a blend of traditional bittersweet and bittersharp cider apple varieties such as Yarlington Mill, Chisel Jersey, Stoke Red, Tremlett’s Bitter and Coate’s Jersey.
Sweetness as per label: 
Package type:
500ml brown glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass:
pint glass, snifter or white wine glass

Ingredients: apple juice, water, sugar, carbon dioxide, malic acid, sulphites, yeast.

Appearance: pours a clear pale golden with no head. The body is light. Carbonation is artificial.

Aroma/Nose: smells of beeswax with notes of leather, ripe red and fermented apples. Very tannic. The scent is dry nice and extremely inviting.

Taste: it starts moderately sweet with light to moderate acidity (you can taste that malic acid was added) and a watery taste. The mid-palate is pleasant with ripe red apples and smoked cheese. The finish is dry with a light bitter taste and a touch of tart apples.

Overall: Beautiful, as a matter of fact hypnotizing, a scent of quite funky proper cider notes invites you to take the first sip. But the moment you tried it you regret you didn’t stop there. This cider is a profanity! On the spot, you can say that a really decent cider made from cider apples was mixed with artificial and completely unnecessary ingredients, which makes this cider almost undrinkable. I feel really sorry for the cider maker, who sold his soul to Marks&Spencer as the addition of malic acid just killed this cider. Perhaps I am a cider purist and sensitive to all sorts of ‘improvements’ with synthetic ingredients as my friend who shared the bottle with me gave the Somerset Traditional 4 out of 6. I will not be that generous. Why, the hell, did you have to spoil such a good cider? 2.5/6 

Availability: online and locally from Marks & Spencer

Price: purchased from Marks&Spencer in Wroclaw, Poland at 12 PLN (2.85 EUR)


4 thoughts on “Marks & Spencer Somerset Traditional Cider (Sheppy’s)

  1. Wow I can’t believe Sheppy’s went so commercial (ingredient wise) with a cider! Even though Marks & Spencer is the more prominent brand name, Sheppy’s still had their name on the label.
    The two ciders I’ve had from Sheppy’s in the U.S. were amazing, and appeared to be the real deal, none of the added junk. Oak Matured and Somerset Draught, of which I preferred the Oak Matured (it is one of my favorite English ciders actually).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Until recently I wasn’t even aware that you can purchase cider at Marks & Spencer! I was happy to see Sheppy’s cider on the shelf as I also enjoy many of their ciders. Imagine my surprise when I saw the ingredients list. So sad.

      Liked by 1 person

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